Sunday, April 3, 2011

Texas Tech prevails in strongest ever Final Four

Texas Tech prevails in Final Four of Chess

By Jamaal Abdul-Alim

April 3, 2011

Herndon, VA-- In a groundbreaking victory that literally hinged on the last match of the last round of a collegiate tournament known as the "Texas Tech Prevails in Final Four of Chess," underdog Texas Tech University clinched the title over the weekend for best college chess team in the nation.

Comprised of three GMs and one IM and coached by GM Susan Polgar, the Texas Tech Knight Raiders Chess Team bested long time exclusive dominators of the tournament -- the University of Maryland, Baltimore County(UMBC) and the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) -- in a two-day, three-round tournament held here April 2 and 3.

The University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) came in second place with a total of 6.5 points, followed by the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College (UTB-TSC) with 6 points and defending champions, the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, (UMBC) with 4.5 points.

The upset win not only means that Texas Tech gets to bring home the Final Four tournament's prestigious President's Cup and all that it symbolizes home to Lubbock, TX.

It also means the players -- GMs Anatoly Bykhovsky, of Israel, Davorin Kuljasevic, of Croatia, Andre Diamant, of Brazil, IM Istvan Sipos, of Hungary and Faik Aleskerov, of Azerbaijan -- will be given top consideration for any summer internships for which they might qualify at international strategic and technological firm Booz Allen Hamilton, a Virginia-based defense contractor that sponsored and hosted the Final Four tournament, as well as a simul by GM Ray Robson and a scholastic chess tournament for area students.

The firm's decision to support and host the chess tournament was not mere corporate philanthropy. Rather, company executives say the firm is seeking the best and most strategic minds in the world to help the company meet its objectives.

Michael Hoffpauir, a consultant for Booz Allen Hamilton who served as TD for the Final Four event, explained the company's rationale for its corporate support.

"It's important that we help our clients solve the toughest problems," Hoffpauir said. "Chess players have demonstrated thatthey are very skilled at solving some very tough problems. There's a natural linkage there."

Like most of the competitors in the Final Four event, the Knight Raiders were all foreign students. As such, jobs that involve defense contract work may lie out of reach, but they might be able to secure some of the various jobs that Booz Allen Hamilton has abroad.

Full article here.

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